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the gift of goodbye:

Remembering Friends and Mentors in Our Martial Arts Community

Hey there, warriors of the mat and life!

Today, we’re stepping into a more reflective corner of our world. We've all been there—the ache of losing a friend, mentor, or a fellow martial artist who left a mark on our lives. While the absence stings, today we're here to focus on the other side of loss: the bright tapestry of memories, lessons, and smiles that stay behind.


The Legacy Lives On

Loss may be inevitable, but what truly defines our relationship with someone who’s gone is the legacy they leave behind. Maybe your mentor taught you the nuances of a complex Muay Thai kick, or maybe they taught you something as simple yet powerful as believing in yourself. Those are the things that don’t fade away; they become a part of your own martial arts journey.


Celebrate, Don’t Commiserate

When someone impactful passes away, it's easy to get lost in the 'what could have been'. But let's pivot; let's celebrate what was. Maybe your friend was the life of every training session, always pulling pranks or telling jokes. Perhaps your mentor had the knack of making complicated Kali moves look like child’s play. When you remember them, let their positive energy fill the room. Smile when you think of them; after all, they made your world a better place.


The Gift of Imperfection

People are flawed; we all have our quirks. It’s easy to idolize someone after they’re gone, but let’s not forget that they were human, just like us. Maybe your friend had a habit of being perpetually late, or perhaps your mentor was a stickler for perfection. These imperfections don’t mar their memory; they enrich it. They serve as gentle reminders that we're all works in progress, and that's okay.


Wisdom Through Remembrance

Whether you practice Taekwondo, JKD, Kali, Silat, or Muay Thai, each discipline teaches us that wisdom isn't just about techniques or physical skills—it’s also about understanding the essence of life. When we remember our friends and mentors, we gain invaluable insights that textbooks and tutorials can’t offer. It's like mastering a complex Silat maneuver; the more you practice remembrance, the more adept you become at navigating the complexities of emotion and relationships.


An Eternal Training Partner

In many ways, those we lose never truly leave us. They become eternal training partners, cheering us on from the sidelines of our memories. Every time you land that complicated kick, escape a difficult hold, or simply laugh with your friends at the dojo, they’re there—in the wisdom you’ve inherited, in the joy you share, and in the community they helped build.


Sign Off

So, warriors, let's promise to honor those who have gone ahead by living our lives as a tribute to theirs. Let’s make them proud by being the best versions of ourselves—on and off the mat.

Until next time, keep fighting the good fight, with your eternal training partners forever in your hearts.

David Vincent’s Martial Arts Train Hard, Fight Easy.

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